Randy Weston’s Journey
Randy Weston’s music is nothing if not notable for the breadth and depth of its influence by his world travels. In this Boston Globe profile by Jeremy Goodwin, Weston’s recollections of his many eventful stops, from Bedford-Stuyvesant through the Berkshire Mountains to his life in Tangier, paint the backdrop for the powerful music we’ve heard from him for decades since.
Photo: Carol FriedmanRead More
Tommy Flanagan and Billy Taylor Play Bird
A piano duo performance of Ornithology by Tommy Flanagan and Billy Taylor, from Billy Taylor’s Piano Counterpoint. Uncannily seamless unison playing in the head bursts into vibrant solos, in the inimitable voices of each player. Thanks to Bret Primack for pointing to this clip.View Video
Paul Bley Blindfold Test
This highly extended blindfold test with Ted Panken finds Paul Bley in irascible, riotous form. It is by no means unusual to find musicians challenging the limitations of the “blindfold test” format; here, Bley prods Panken, the tester, to give him something challenging to listen to and digest \u2014 not so different, after all, from what intelligent and perceptive listeners to the art form should demand.
-Nick MoyRead More
Pianist George Cables Answers Five Questions
George Cables, who has been playing solid mainstream piano since the 60’s, most recently a member of the veteran assemblage The Cookers, issued some marvelously pensive responses to questions posed by Alan Nahigian of Astoria Oregon’s Daily Astorian, following a stint in the Pacific Northwest.Read More
Shirley Scott on Piano Jazz
A very cool 1992 conversation between Marian McPartland and Shirley Scott, using words and pianos. Shirley was the queen of the organ with historic work in the ‘60s with Eddie Lockjaw Davis and then husband Stanley Turrentine. A wonderful sweet person and a kick-ass musician.
-Michael CuscunaRead More
Remembering Bebo Valdes, Cuban Music Titan
The Latin jazz world lost one of its key figures with the passing of Bebo Valdes on March 22 at age 94. Valdes, one of the greatest pianists in the history of Cuban popular music, drew gracefully from such disparate sources as Yoruba, western Baroque music and Tatum to forge his unique and deeply influential voice. Larry Blumenfeld tells us more about the impact Valdes registered on Latin music as we know it today.Read More
An Appreciation of Jaki Byard
The jazz world is so accustomed to considering the greatness of pianist Jaki Byard that we sometimes overlook his pivotal influence as musical educator and role model in his home New England, and in Boston in particular. New Englander Tom Reney posted this fond reminder for the occasion of Jaki Byard’s 90th birthday.
-Nick MoyRead More
The Christian McBride Trio
If you haven’t checked out Christian McBride’s exciting trio, with piano phenom Christian Sands and drummer Ulysses Owens, we’d like to offer you the opportunity to sample their easy, youthful brilliance and exuberance. Recorded At Scala, in Leverkusen, Germany.
-Nick MoyView Video
Vijay Iyer and Rudresh Mahanthappa Together Live
Two of today’s most important improvisational artists, pianist Vijay Iyer and saxophonist Rudresh Mahanthappa, collaborators for more than a decade, in this exhilarating concert performance of “The Shape of Things,” at the Bridgestone Music Festival in Sao Paulo. With Stephen Crump, bass, and Marcus Gilmore, drums.View Video
Brad Mehldau’s Cultural and Musical Journey
Ted Panken’s interview with Brad Mehldau from jazz.com sheds light on a generation of jazz students who came through the New School in the late 1980s, as Mehldau did, studying with an earlier generation of master pianists like Kenny Werner and Fred Hersch. Mehldau retraces his dive into classical music and German philosophy, and the German art song, and his journey to embracing other more open song structures to explore.Read More